Girl, 5, donates savings to county K-9 Unit


WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) -The Marathon County K-9 Unit received a special donation from a 5-year-old Merrill girl. Mia Keller donated all of her savings toward the department’s K-9 Unit in early May.

“I saved my money to be a police officer and help the police officers,” Mia said.

Susan Keller, Mia’s mom said the donation was a surprise event for both her and the officers. Originally the mother-daughter pair made the trip to the sheriff’s department to purchase a raffle ticket for their annual K-9 unit fundraiser.

When told all the tickets were sold out, Susan planned on leaving but said Mia had other plans.

“She unloaded her whole wallet and handed it over,” Susan said. “She’s so kind. It wasn’t at all shocking to me that she wanted to donate her money to the K-9 Unit, I just didn’t think she was going to give them all of her money.”

The donation totaled $26. Money Mia was planning to use on ice cream.

“That money is from birthdays, Christmas, visits from grandpa. She had been saving for a sunny day but decided to empty it for the dogs instead. I’m so proud of her,” Susan said.

After a hard year, the officers said Mia’s donation was the pick-me-up they needed. To thank her for her donation, Sherriff Scott Parks organized a special training day for Mia to join in on.

K-9 units from Marshfield and Stevens Point came down for the occasion. Mia got the opportunity to meet all the officers, tour the department, and help the dogs with their drug detection training.

At the end of the day, Mia met with the command staff and was officially sworn in by Sheriff Parks as a Junior Deputy.

“As far as she’s concerned, police are heroes right up there with Batman and Superman. They’re superheroes to her and now she feels like one too,” Susan said.

She was also awarded a Marathon County badge, K-9 unit pin, framed ‘thank you’ letter from the department, and a signed picture of all the officers with their dogs.

To that he officers for a fun day and Police Officer Appreciation Week the Kellers are planning to bring pizzas to their new friends at the Sheriff’s Department on Friday.

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